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The Delius Collection
 
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The Delius Collection

8 Oct. 2012 | Format: MP3

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Also available in CD Format
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 1 Aug. 2012
  • Release Date: 8 Oct. 2012
  • Label: Heritage Records
  • Copyright: 2012 Heritage Records
  • Total Length: 7:59:55
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B009P6C20G
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 44,286 in Albums (See Top 100 in Albums)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By M. Raynes on 28 Sept. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a delayed review that I said I would add having initially added a listing of the works and artists that was originally missing from Amazon's page for this Delius Anniversary collection from Heritage. Now that I have had a chance to listen to all the music and in the case of many of the larger works in this collection to compare them with other recordings available to music lovers here at Amazon and elsewhere I think I am able to add a few words to the bare listing of the works.

When looking at the collection as a whole we can see that principally it derives from a series of recording from the 1980s which were made by the now defunct Unicorn Kanchana label under the musical direction of the Eric Fenby in the final years of his distinguished life. Working under Dr Fenby's direction were the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Ambrosian Singers and a small group of soloists both vocal and instrumental. The tenor Anthony Rolfe Johnson, the soprano Felicity Lott, the mezzo Sarah Walker, the bass-baritone Thomas Allen and the violinist Ralph Holmes are the star performers here.

The collection is particularly strong on Delius's work for violin. The Violin Concerto, all three sonatas for violin and piano and two little known works for violin and orchestra - the four movement Suite for violin and orchestra and the Legende for violin and orchestra - are all here. The conductor of the works for orchestra and violin is Vernon Handley and how good it is to be reminded quite how fine an interpreter of Delius he was. The chamber music for violin and piano the soloist throughout is Ralph Holmes and he really allows his violin to take flight in the rhapsodic passages.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rob Davies on 10 May 2014
Format: MP3 Download Verified Purchase
Conventional wisdom is that you either love Delius's music or hate it. However, my own reaction varies widely - amongst the items included here there are some wonderful large-scale pieces like The Song of the High Hills and Paris. On the other hand, the world-weary texts set in The Songs of Sunset seem to me to have brought out the least attractive side of the composer. And I've tried to get to grips with the Violin Concerto several times over 40 years in various recordings and live, but it still seems to me to meander on and on: with this download I will give the music another chance. Occasionally VW's barbed comment about Delius's music made to Michael Kennedy comes to my mind: "Sounds like the curate improvising, I'm afraid." But he was surely wrong about the best of Delius.

This set is worth the price (£8 - buy the download before someone notices the mistake!!) for Song of the High Hills alone - I paid about £12 for this CD in the mid 80s. If you're a Delius agnostic try this recording and it may convert you to at least a partial believer. This is a classic early digital Unicorn Kanchana recording from 1983. The record producer, Christopher Palmer, did a great job in getting the perspectives and balance right, though this means that the dynamic range is very wide. There is one track for this work (nearly 30 minutes long) but that is a very good idea as it avoids the risk of the blips that sometimes occur when continuous music is broken into several MP3 files.

I can't agree with the reviewer above who said that the recording quality is of historic interest only - just the opposite, most of the recordings are really excellent. More professional reviewers (Gramophone, MusicWeb International) seem to agree with me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mike C, Shropshire on 6 Jan. 2015
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This was the third of three important collections issued for the 150th anniversary of the composer's birth. Whilst the EMI/Warner box set hits (almost) all of the buttons in terms of quality, value for money and content - the absence of texts was unfortunate - and is unlikely to be displaced from the top of the pile, this repackaged set of 7 discs previously issued on the Unicorn-Kanchana label is a veritable treasure chest of Delius at his best. It is certainly a better all-round package than the Decca edition - see my earlier review (which I have since down-graded from 4 to 3 stars) - which now seems hastily and clumsily cobbled together by comparison. This Heritage set re-orders the contents of the original 7 discs to produce a very good balance of exquisite miniatures alongside larger works; putting the songs in both their orchestral and piano accompaniment versions side by side on one disc is a good move and the provision of texts (with parallel translations where appropriate) in an authoritative booklet of background notes that includes Stephen Lloyd's excellent essay on Eric Fenby are further examples of the care and thought that has gone into this compilation. The sound quality has been enhanced; the improvement most noticeable in the more delicate pieces such as A Late Lark - a personal favourite - in which both soloist and orchestra sounded rather recessed in the original Fenby Legacy recording but which here both appear clearer and brighter. Eric Fenby conducts/plays in three-quarters of the collection and, by virtue of his special relationship with the composer, produces authoritative performances throughout (perhaps with the exception of Dance Rhapsody No. 2 which seems curiously underpowered) but there are outstanding contributions elsewhere from soloists Ralph Holmes and Philip Fowke under the batons of Vernon Handley and Norman del Mar respectively. Now at bargain price, this is unmissable - snap it up without delay as soon as it becomes available again!
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